The Enforcement Directorate (ED) on Monday registered case against Vijay Mallya under prevention of money laundering act and will question him shortly.
The ED has named 7 persons, including Mallya, in the money laundering case.
The Enforcement Directorate (ED) had launched a preliminary enquiry against the ‘king of good times’ under the anti-money laundering laws to ensure that he does not escape to friendly countries, just like former commissioner of Indian Premier League (IPL) Lalit Modi, whose deportation from the UK is long awaited after a series of red-corner notices.
With this, the enforcement sleuths were also in the process of short-listing Mallya’s properties in India and overseas.
The Debt Recovery Tribunal (DRT) will also pass orders on government-owned State Bank of India’s (SBI) application seeking lenders’ first right on the USD 75 million payout from Diageo Plc to Vijay Mallya under a recent “sweetheart deal”.
Rejecting allegations that he is an “absconder” in the wake of his statement to spend more time in England after signing a “sweetheart” deal with Diageo, the liquor baron said he will continue to cooperate with investigative agencies related to the loans provided by banks to long-defunct Kingfisher Airlines.
The CBI found that the IDBI Bank granted loan to Kingfisher Airlines despite an adverse internal audit report on its financial condition. The report had highlighted that the company was unable to repay loans earlier obtained from a consortium of 17 banks of which IDBI was a part. Mr. Mallya’s companies owed over Rs. 7,000 crore to the consortium.
The ED’s move comes in the backdrop of the Karnataka High Court recently issuing notice to Mr. Mallya and nine others on a petition by State Bank of India (SBI) and 12 other banks seeking his arrest and impounding of his passport on charges of defaulting on loans.
Mallya, who was widely known as ‘King of Good Times’ and his lavish parties before his businesses started plunging into one after another crisis resulting in sale or closure of various companies, also said that while banks would eventually recover a “substantial part of their debt”, the loss for his group is permanent.
“I have been most pained as being painted as an absconder – I have neither the intention nor any reason to abscond. I have been a non-resident for almost 28 years and the Reserve Bank of India has acknowledged this in writing,” he said in the statement.